3 of the Best Graceful Aging Ingredients to Use in Your 20s and 30s

Many physical features like little fine lines, smile lines, and eye lines begin to appear as we get older. However, those features are not necessarily something that we should worry about. They indicate our humanity, and they show how we’ve laughed and lived under the sun over the years. It’s true though that many of us want to age gracefully. Preparing our skin preemptively is the best way to do so, and below we have listed the best ingredients to start with.  

#1 Retinoic acid

Normally, you’d only be able to get this ingredient from your doctor, but that is slowly changing. Retinoic acid has become the gold standard in dermatology, and although it was created for acne sufferers, a lot of people realized that it helps with fine lines. Retinoic acid plumps up the skin, helps with scars, and it even helps with pigmentation. Retinoic acid accomplishes these thing by deeply penetrating the skin and speeding up cell turnover. Because vitamin A helps to quickly turnover a new layer of skin,  it also helps with collagen stimulation. 

VItamin A has many derivatives, and tretinoin and retinoic acid are the most potent forms. On the other hand, retinol comes over the counter. In contrast to OTC retinol, your skin makes tretinoin and retinoic acid naturally, and they are normally what doctors prescribe. With retinol, your skin has to transform it into retinoic acid before its absorbed.

This prcocess cause retinol to be less potent, but nevertheless, retinol is still very effective. However, if you’re looking for something a little more potent like retinoic acid but have no health insurance, you can still get it. Dermatica has an entire panel of dermatologists who work to create custom skincare for every single person that orders a bottle from them. And while custom skincare is common, most brands don’t customize prescription skincare like Dermatica does. 

Dermatica - $24.


Dermatica has a retinoic acid serum, but all of the formulas for the serum are made differently depending on the person's skin type. For example, Cassandra’s has tretinoin for scars, wrinkles, and acne. There’s also clindamycin, which is an antibiotic for acne, and niacinamide. So, if a dermatologist is not accessible for you right now,  Dermatica is a great option. The only caveat is that the product comes in small bottle. However, it does last 28 days. Plus, it’s only $24.99 plus shipping for a consultation with a derm and a customized skincare prescription.

No matter what you choose, all forms of Vitamin A are effective tools for gracefully aging. They have been studied and proven to speed up skin cell turnover, to stimulate fibroblast, and likewise collagen. 

#2 Ceramides. 

50% of the stratum corneum, the top layer of your skin, is made of ceramides. Ceramides are naturally produced fats within our skin. When our skin has enough of them, our skin is supple, plump, revitalized, and rejuvenated. Moreover, fine lines show up less. In contrast, dry, dehydrated, and undernourished skin is more susceptible to these things. Upon it, you might notice dullness and paperiness. To resolve this, internal nutrition and hydration are important, but ceramides are especially important in supporting graceful aging. In addition, ceramides work optimally when they are combined with other hydrating and moisturizing ingredients like shea butter, jojoba oil, hyaluronic acid, vitamin B, and panthenol. 

Collagen is important because as we get older, our skin doesn’t produce as much collagen and elastin. Over time, the sun will greatly impact our skin, and this can cause our skin to lose its structure and become more permeable. However, keeping the skin hydrated will help prevent this from happened to a large degree. When your skin is moisturized and healthy, you’re not going to have a lot of things getting in or out. But, whdn the barrier is compromised,  a lot of your skin’s natural moisture can escape, and that’s called trans-epidermal water loss. When this happens, it’s easier for things like viruses, pathogens, and bacteria to get in and irritate the skin. That’s why it’s very important to hydrate and moisturize in the pursuit of graceful aging.

One of our favorite moisturizers is the Dear Klairs which is a rich, moist, and soothing cream with ceramide np. This is the closest thing to vegan vaseline that does not feel greasy on your skin. If you love the way slugging makes someone’s skin look, but you hate feeling greasy, we recommend this. Just like slugging, this moisturizer makes your skin feel soft and supple.

Dear Klairs Rich Moist Soothing Cream - $26


Purito and Ceremdx also have a really good ceramide-infused cream. It’s the most common, least expensive, and readily available.

Cruelty-Free CeraVe Dupe - Ceremedex - $14.99

PURITO - Dermide Cica Barrier Sleeping Pack - $16.28

#3 Zinc Oxide

A lot of people don’t realize that the skincare products' effectiveness is greatly compromised when you don’t use sunscreen. The sun and all of those pesky UV rays, free radicals, and reactive oxygen species that come from the sun are the number one damager of skin. Sunscreen also keeps acne from creating hyperpigmentation and scars. Moreover, zinc oxide helps to prevent cancer by scattering ultraviolet and visible. All in all, zinc oxide is a fantastic mineral shield, and it might also have some help with blue light too. 

Dermalogica invisible physical defense Sunscreen - $45

Black Girl Sunscreen - $18.99